Getting a new outdoor patio space can add some flair and summer fun to your home. Doesn't everyone want a cool outdoor area to spend time with friends and family around the grill or by the pool?
Whether you're redoing your patio or you're making something totally new, you're going to need a design plan. How do you know if you're getting it right?
Patio furniture is expensive and if you're going to be building additions or adding expensive equipment, you want to get it right the first time.
We're here to help with some mistakes with patio designs that we've seen homeowners make in the past. Learn from their errors so you can get the patio of your dreams without any pesky blunders to set you back.
Read on for 6 of the most common mistakes that we've seen.
1. Not Pre-Planning
Any kind of home renovation is going to require a plan. It's fun to go to the home and garden section and grab everything that appeals to you, but how do you know that these things are all going to go together? How do you know that they'll fit in your space?
You don't want to find yourself in a situation where you end up overspending because you buy the wrong things or take the wrong measurements. Maybe you'll get home and realize that your new swing doesn't match your outdoor aesthetic, or you'll realize that you can't possibly fit 8 deck chairs in your space.
Take a step back and think about what you want before you apply it. You'll thank yourself later.
2. Not Measuring
This brings us to proper measuring. If you're building something new, this starts with the "measure twice cut once" philosophy comes in. Making accurate measurements is the difference between a successful build and a project that costs more than it should due to wasted materials.
When you're not building from scratch you still need to measure. How much floor space do you have? What are the dimensions of your patio? If you have a covered patio or a patio with a doorway or arch, how wide and tall is your space?
You don't want to buy all of your furniture just to realize that it won't fit through the doorways, or that it won't fit into the space that you have allotted to you.
You might think that you know your space well enough. Do you know it well enough to risk it?
3. Not Making a Budget
It's easy to get overzealous when you're doing a home project. You have all of these ideas in your head about how you want things to go. You're going to have the most beautiful patio on the block, right?
Figure out how much you're willing to spend first. This is especially true if you're building from scratch, or having it built from scratch and you have to factor in building costs alongside the furniture costs.
Budgets also help you determine priorities. Do you want an outdoor cooking space before you expand your sitting area? Do you need a play area for the children before you work on a bar for the adults? Making a budget lets you know what needs to come first on the list.
4. Making Poor Material Choices
Not all materials are going to be outdoor-friendly. Unless you live in the desert, keeping moisture and cleanability in mind is crucial.
This goes for everything on your patio. What material is the surface made from? Will it be protected from moisture, the feet of all of your guests, and anything else you throw at it? Is it easy to clean?
What about your furniture? Is it moisture-proof like these outdoor lounge sets? Can cushions be cleaned separately from their furniture bases? Are there any electric parts that can short, or metal parts that can rust?
Don't buy something just because it's cute. Indoor furniture is indoor for a reason. Choosing durable and reliable furniture for patios is key.
5. Trying to Overdo it
You have a vision in your head of the perfect cozy outdoor space. It has a tiki bar, a full outdoor sitting area complete with a fireplace, and comfortable chaise lounges. It has an outdoor kitchen.
How realistic is this?
It's better to have a well-designed space that starts off sparse than it is to crowd your space with your dream objects before you're ready.
You might be able to have that dream patio, but you'll have to make some tweaks and take some time. You likely won't be able to fit every object and that's okay! This is where we go back to that priority list that we mentioned before.
Your patio isn't a full 5 bedroom house; it's more like a studio apartment. Make strategic choices.
6. Forgetting About the Weather
What's your local weather like? Is it perfect year-round with bright skies, a warm (but never hot!) temperature, and no rain or snow? If so, you're fortunate, but you're an outlier.
If this doesn't sound like you're going to need to consider your local weather conditions when you're planning out appropriate furnishings and what purpose you want your patio to serve.
If you're in an area with a lot of precipitation it isn't a bad idea to have a covered patio. This is also true if you're somewhere that gets far too hot during the summer with little respite from the sun. There are multiple ways to cover a patio and your ideal plan will vary depending on the weather your area endures.
Heavy snow or wind? You'll need to pick something sturdy. Sun, light winds, and rain? You can pick something with less reinforcement.
If you want an outdoor space you can enjoy year-round, consider an enclosed patio for the chilly or rainy months. There are temporary patio enclosures that suit this purpose.
If your area gets frigid during the winter, consider a heat source. This is where a stove or fireplace is a great choice.
Avoid These Mistakes with Patio Designs!
Your patio is supposed to be a place where you can socialize and relax. You don't want to slow your progress by making any of these common and avoidable mistakes with patio designs.
Do yourself a favor and plan ahead to avoid these mistakes on your patio renovation journey!
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